OFAC Agrees to $132 Million Settlement with Standard Chartered Bank for Violations of Sanctions Programs

On December 10, 2012, the Office of Foreign Assets Controls (OFAC) announced a $132 million agreement with Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) to settle its potential liability for apparent violations of U.S. sanctions. The settlement is part of a combined $327 million settlement with federal and local government partners. 

OFAC alleged that from 2001 to 2007, SCB's London head office and its Dubai branch engaged in payment practices that interfered with the implementation of U.S. economic sanctions by financial institutions in the U.S., including SCB's New York branch. In London, those practices included omitting or removing material references to U.S.-sanctioned locations or entities from payment messages sent to U.S. financial institutions. In Dubai, the practices included sending payment messages to or through the U.S. without references to locations or entities implicating U.S. sanctions. As a result, millions of dollars of payments were routed through U.S. banks for or on behalf of sanctioned parties in apparent violation of U.S. sanctions.

These actions were in violations of the Iranian Transactions Regulations; the Burmese Sanctions Regulations; the Sudanese Sanctions Regulations; and the now-repealed version of the Libyan Sanctions Regulations.